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Sequoia sempervirens - (D.Don.)Endl.

Common Name Coastal Redwood, Redwood, California Redwood, Coast Redwood
Family Taxodiaceae
USDA hardiness 7-10
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Deep well-drained soils on flat land and slopes in the coastal fog belt below 600 metres[71, 229].
Range South-western N. America - Oregon to California.
Edibility Rating    (0 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (1 of 5)
Care
Frost Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Sequoia sempervirens Coastal Redwood, Redwood, California Redwood, Coast Redwood


www.flickr.com/photos/bastique
Sequoia sempervirens Coastal Redwood, Redwood, California Redwood, Coast Redwood
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:KENPEI

 

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Summary

Form: Pyramidal.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Sequoia sempervirens is an evergreen Tree growing to 110 m (361ft) by 20 m (65ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 8 and is frost tender. It is in leaf all year, in flower from February to April, and the seeds ripen in October. The species is monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and is pollinated by Wind.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil. It cannot tolerate atmospheric pollution.

Synonyms

Taxodium sempervirens

Habitats

Woodland Garden Canopy;

Edible Uses

None known

Medicinal Uses



Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

Stimulant;  Tonic.

A poultice of the heated leaves has been used in the treatment of earaches[257]. The gummy sap has been used as a stimulant and tonic in the treatment of rundown conditions[257].

Other Uses

Basketry;  Dye;  Insulation;  Paper;  Soil conditioner;  Stuffing;  Wood.

A brown dye is obtained from the bark[168]. The bark and the wood contain tannin, but in too low a concentration for economic utilization[223]. On a 10% moisture basis, the bark contains 4.4% tannin and the wood 2.5%[223]. The sprouts from the burls have been used in making baskets[257]. The plant develops a thick covering of a soft and fibrous bark (you can punch it hard without hurting your hand). This can be harvested without harm to the tree and used as an insulating or stuffing material[171]. A fine bark dust that is produced whilst doing this is a good soil conditioner[171]. This fibrous bark is also used for making paper. Branches can be harvested at any time of the year from logged trees, the bark is cut into useable pieces and soaked in clear water prior to cooking for 6 or more hours with lye. The fibres are beaten for six hours in a ball mill and the paper is a brown colour[189]. Wood - straight-grained, knot-free, light, soft, not strong, very durable in contact with the soil. A high quality and easily worked lumber, it is used for joinery, fence posts, construction etc[1, 11, 46, 61, 82, 171, 229].

Cultivation details

Industrial Crop: Biomass;  Management: Coppice;  Minor Global Crop.

Landscape Uses:Christmas tree, Firewood, Hedge, Aggressive surface roots possible, Screen, Specimen, Woodland garden. Requires a rich moist soil[1], growing best in deep sheltered valleys in cool humid areas[81, 200]. Dislikes chalky soils according to one report[1] whilst another says that it succeeds on chalk[200]. Tolerates poorly drained sites[200]. Tolerates partial shade for many years when young[200]. Strongly dislikes windy sites, especially if the winds are cold[200]. Plants dislike atmospheric pollution, growing poorly in cities[185]. Plants are fully hardy in Britain, though they may lose their leaves in cold winters. This seems to have no detrimental effect on the tree[188]. The giant redwood is probably the tallest growing tree in the world[11, 81], it thrives in Britain, especially in the cooler moister western half of the country[11]. It is fast growing in cultivation[81], reaching 25 metres tall in 20 years in a good site[200], and can be successfully coppiced even when quite old[11, 81, 200]. It is a long-lived tree in the wild, often living 1000 years and with some specimens 2200 years old recorded[229]. Plants are tender when young[11]. If trees larger than 80cm are planted out, they should be coppiced in order to allow the roots to become established[200]. Male cones shed their pollen in February unless delayed by frost when they might wait until April. Frost just before flowering or at the time of flowering kills the pollen[185]. New growth takes place from May until the end of September and can be very vigorous, 1.2 metres a year is not uncommon and this can be maintained for 30 years or more[185]. The best trees are found in Devon, Wiltshire, Perthshire and Ireland[185]. The crushed foliage has the scent of candle wax[185]. Special Features: Attracts birds, North American native, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.

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Propagation

Seed - sow early spring in a cold frame in light shade. Seed can also be sown as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse. Germination rates are usually very low[11]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots once they are large enough to handle and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer. Plants will require some protection from the cold and spring frosts for their first year or two outdoors[78]. If there are sufficient seeds, they can be sown in a lightly shaded outdoor bed in late March[78]. Grow on the plants in the seedbed for two years before planting them out into their permanent positions in late autumn or early spring. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, August/September in a frame. They form roots in winter or early spring[1]. Pot them up into individual pots once the roots are developing nicely and plant them out in the summer if they are growing well. Otherwise grow them on for the next winter in a cold frame and plant them out in early summer.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameEdibility RatingMedicinal Rating
Metasequoia glyptostroboidesDawn Redwood00
Sequoiadendron giganteumBig Tree, Giant sequoia, Giant Redwood, Sierra Redwood00

 

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Expert comment

Author

(D.Don.)Endl.

Botanical References

1171200

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here

Readers comment

david   Wed Dec 16 2009

young foliage edible and pleasant(Encyclopedia of Edible Plants of North America(Couplan)

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